CHARLESTON, S.C. – The College of Charleston softball team split a Tuesday afternoon doubleheader with Charleston Southern at CSU Softball Field. The Cougars came from behind to take game one, 2-1, but fell in too deep of a hole to come back in a 6-4 game two loss.
Sophomore Hope Klicker (Walla Walla, Wash.) was dominant once again in the circle as she threw her ninth complete game of the season in game one. She fanned a season-high 12 hitters while allowing just two hits and two walks.
Also in game one, Carly Corthell (Reno, Nev.) and Allison Pedigo (Scottsville, Ky.) each had an RBI as he Cougars got away with stranding 13 base runners. Corthell and Lizzy Vaughn (Placerville, Calif.) both had two hits from the top of the Cougar lineup.
The Cougars outhit the Bucs, 10-6, in game two, but a four-run CSU first inning paced the game and was ultimately too much for the Cougars to overcome.
COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON: 2, CHARLESTON SOUTHERN: 1
CofC had little trouble producing base runners, but instead lacked timely hitting which could have solidified the win much earlier. The Cougars left the bases loaded three different times, leading to nine runners being stranded in scoring position and 13 in total.
After the Cougars loaded the bases in the first, CSU left fielder Stephanie Sbardella sent a solo shot out to left on a one-out, 1-0 pitch to give the Bucs the early lead.
CofC had an answer in the top of the second, once again loading the bases with a Rebecca Mueller single (Fair Oaks, Calif.) and walks by Lexi Murdock (Clifton, Va.) and Ashton Jarrett (Hanahan, S.C.). Corthell then lined a single into right field to plate the game-tying run, but the CofC rally ended there.
Both pitchers quietly worked through their opponents’ batting order until the Cougars capitalized on Bucs pitcher Jennifer Giles losing her pitch control a bit in the seventh.
Hodgson and Mackenzie Maples (Corona, Calif) both drew walks, and CSU botched Chandler Frisbie’s (Lawrenceville, Ga.) sacrifice bunt effort which loaded the bases. Pedigo then displayed her calm patience at the plate in a seven-pitch at-bat which ultimately resulted in an RBI walk and the game’s winning run.
College of Charleston: 4, Charleston Southern: 6
The first five Lady Bucs hitters combined to hit for the cycle, and the result was a four-run first-inning CSU lead in game two.
The Cougars started to work their way back into the game right away with a productive rally in the top of the second. Maples started it off with a hard-hit single into right field, and Pedigo drove a single to center to put runners on the corners. Mueller and Kristy Giragosian (Charlotte, N.C.) both followed suit with RBI singles to right field to cut the lead to 4-2.
The Lady Bucs undid the Cougars’ rally with one of their own in the bottom of the third, and Rother singled to right field for two RBIs after a walk and Cougar error granted them two free base runners.
Down 6-2 in the fourth, the Cougars continued to show resiliency and cut further into the lead. Pedigo once again prolonged the life of her at bat by fouling back and spoiling multiple pitches before drawing a one-out walk. Mueller then singled back up the middle and CSU infielders committed back-to-back fielding errors on the ensuing plays which allowed Pedigo to score and cut the lead to 6-3.
Hodgson homered to cut the deficit to 6-4 in the fifth, but the Cougars would never get closer despite putting five runners aboard between the sixth and seventh innings.
The Cougars return to Southern Conference play with a trip to Boone, N.C., to face Appalachian State in a three game series. The teams will play a Friday evening doubleheader and conclude the series on Saturday.